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USC Trojans rise to No. 6 in College Football Playoff Rankings

Despite having two losses, LSU is ranked ahead of USC

Two days after rising to No. 5 in the national college football polls, the USC Trojans rose again on Tuesday, climbing to No. 6 in the latest College Football Playoff Rankings

The top four teams in the CFP Rankings remained the same: Georgia, Ohio State, Michigan, TCU. 

The biggest surprise was LSU (9-2) claiming the No. 5 ranking, one spot ahead of USC (10-1). A two-loss team has never made the College Football Playoff.

The biggest reason for USC not being ranked ahead of LSU? The Trojans' defense.

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"It came up over and over again to make sure, and there's reasons for both teams, but the committee at the end of the day saw the wins over Alabama and Mississippi as stronger than the wins over UCLA and Oregon State," selection committee chair Boo Corrigan said on the ESPN rankings show. "One area we still have questions on is the strength of the defense of USC, and looking at it in its entirety, we believe that LSU deserved to be ranked 5 and SC 6."

There is a lot of football left to play, and LSU needs to beat Texas A&M this week and Georgia in the SEC championship to have a shot at a playoff berth. 

USC needs to beat No. 15 Notre Dame on Saturday, then win the Pac-12 championship game on Dec. 2 to have a chance. The picture will look much clearer after this weekend, with Michigan and Ohio State playing each other. The loser of that game will likely drop behind USC in the rankings, putting LSU in the top 4 and USC in the top 5. 

If the Trojans close the season with two big-time wins - Notre Dame and Oregon or Utah - it will be difficult to keep them out of the four-team playoff.